Season’s over, workouts continue

Nate Bottiger, Staff Writer

Pitt-Johnstown’s fall sports have been out of season for four or five months now, but a few teams are already preparing for next year and staying in shape in the postseason atmosphere.

Pitt-Johnstown’s women’s volleyball and men’s and women’s soccer programs are all practicing this offseason.

Since January, the women’s soccer team has been holding practices in the Sports Center, but soon, the team is to move outdoors to Richland Senior High School’s field.

The team practices three times a week with the track team at 6 a.m., and another two times a week at the Sports Center.

Freshman Janna Stoop said the team is trying to stay in shape for their spring season, which consists of only scrimmaging other teams.

The games are still full field and full roster games that are still like any other game, but they do not count toward the team’s record.

Stoop said head coach Jim Herlinger has given the team some time off of practices from now until the team returns from Spring Break, which is from Saturday to March 11.

Stoop said the practices are a good way of determining spots on the field and positions. She also said it helps build chemistry among team members.

“I personally like them because they make all of us work hard for a spot on the field and it is also a good opportunity for team bonding.”

Stoop said the team is not allowed to practice together over the summer due to NCAA regulations, but said that team members have individual workout plans that players are expected to follow over the four months.\

Stoop said that, although summer workouts are a good routine to improve their skills, it is also important to take a day off, so that offseason injuries do not occur.

“I think that you need to take a day off once a week, so you don’t become overworked and exhausted.”

Stoop said summer workouts are important because their competitors are probably working just as much as they are in the offseason.

“I’m sure those women are out there too, just trying to get better and get an edge over us.”

The women’s volleyball team practices only once a week from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesday in the Wellness Center or Sports Center gym.

Freshman Nikki Oakes said the team is trying to focus on drills that will help hone their skills and improve conditioning.

The team also runs scrimmages by splitting up and playing against their teammates to work on in-game situations.

Oakes said the reason the team only practices once a week is because of NCAA regulations. She also said that the team will put more time into practices once NCAA rules allow.

“Every college has the ability to work out in the offseason, but, due to NCAA rules, we are only allowed certain amounts of time.”

Oakes said the players also work out and condition individually, which helps to work around the time NCAA allows.

The men’s soccer team focused on conditioning on Mondays and Wednesdays since their season ended, but is to begin practicing on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

The team practices and conditions in the Sports Center gym, and, on top of the conditioning workouts and practices, the team is also expected to participate in the soccer intramural league competitive division.

Sophomore Bryce DeLizio said the conditioning sessions are of major importance to the team’s practice because it covers a large aspect of the game.

“People already have skill, but skill only goes so far. You truly need conditioning to be in the play.”